Arts and Entertainment

Could Japanese Godzilla beat American Godzilla? And how big is the Starship Enterprise? At last, some answers...

People: Auntie's new poetic licence

THERE is, says John Agard, a poetic germ that infects certain areas of the BBC. "It's a healthy germ, though," he adds swiftly. John is the BBC's poet-in-residence; he has just started in his new post, and is settling in very happily, thank you, though things are "hectic and frenetic". One of his first appearances was a surprise slot on Newsnight two weeks ago. The poem was about numeracy, literacy and ministers getting their sums wrong. "I came on just after Kirsty Wark looked at the papers," he explains. "Then last week, on the panel, they invited Adrian Mitchell to give his views on the situation in Iraq - a poet, and a pacifist! It was very exciting. And they mentioned Siegfried Sassoon in that programme as well. In just two weeks Newsnight had found a real poetic chemistry."

Film: Best of the films

LONDON TOP 10

Cinema: Kate Winslet: the sinking man's crumpet

TITANIC (12) is one of the most spectacular films ever made. It's also one of the most badly written. And yet, despite the abyss between James Cameron's meagre screenwriting talents and the apocalyptic grandeur of his direction, Titanic stays afloat. The dialogue may be unspeakable, but the film remains unsinkable.

Worse things happen at sea

Despite early hype predicting box-office disaster to match that of `Waterworld', `Titanic' is now the hot tip to clean up at the Oscars. Billy Zane, one of the film's stars, recalls life on-board

Film: I've got that sinking feeling

the big picture

Film: Celluloid symphonies

James Horner has become the Mozart of movies, providing the scores for films from `Braveheart' to his latest, `Titanic'. Edward Seckerson charts the career of Hollywood's top scorer.

Film: A scene to remember: how the directors of `Titanic' accurately recreated a poignant moment

A good captain, states the lore of the sea, should always go down with his ship. In the case of the Titanic, though, it was not just her master but her designer, too, who remained at his post as the "unsinkable" liner submerged in the early hours of 15 April 1912. In the 1958 film of the disaster, A Night to Remember, the last we see of Michael Goodliffe's phlegmatic Mr Thomas Andrews is a shot of him standing alone in the ship's deserted smoking-room, staring fixedly at the picture above the mantelpiece. It's a poignant scene, all stiff upper lip and understated heroics. There's just one problem: it's the wrong painting.

Film: Whenever you get that sinking feeling, get busy

Director James Cameron has been haunted by death since he was a boy. His latest film, `Titanic', is about two-and-a-half hours in the life of people who know they face death. He tells Nick Hasted about his `metaphor for mortality'.

And the band played on...

But what was the tune the band struck up as the ship went down? Few who have seen Roy Ward Baker's 1958 film of the Titanic's doom, A Night to Remember, will forget the scene. As panic sweeps the decks, real men rush about shouting "Women and children first!" while wimps head lemming- like for the stern. Wallace Hartley, leader of the ship's band, puts down his fiddle. "It's the end, boys," he stoically observes. "We've done our duty. We can go now."

A film to remember

THERE IS a thriving market already in props used in the making of Titanic, which is perhaps the most bizarre measure of the extraordinary success of this $200m Hollywood movie. In the three weeks since it opened in America, Titanic has ceased to be a mere epic and has become a phenomenon. It may well turn out to be an epic phenomenon, quite apart from being the most extravagant movie ever made - perhaps the last of its kind.

Brits go for Oscars on wings and water

Two UK actresses are emerging as favourites for the Academy Awards, reports Tim Cornwell. But there's no contest between the films

FILM: Lights, camera, lots of action

Only one woman in Hollywood specialises in thrillers. Sarah Gristwood meets Kathryn Bigelow, director of 'Strange Days'

Royal Aeronautical Society

The following have been elected to Fellowship of the Royal Aeronautical Society:

I'll be back, but first I'll change a nappy

He was the world's greatest bodybuilder; he became the world's highest-paid actor. He married JFK's niece and has been spoken of as a future president. But there is a softer side to Arnold Schwarzenegger, as Nigel Andrews reveals

Too much safety in the home

SAFE PASSAGE Robert Allan Ackerman (15) THE MAN IN MY LIFE Jean Charles Tacchella (12) SMILES OF A SUMMER NIGHT Ingmar Bergman (PG)
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US immigration: President Obama ready to press ahead with long-promised plan to overhaul 'broken system' - but will it get past a Republican-controlled Congress?

Immigration: Obama's final frontier

The President is ready to press ahead with the long-promised plan to overhaul America's 'broken system' - but will it get past a Republican-controlled Congress?
Travelling to work by scooter is faster than walking and less sweaty than cycling, so why aren’t we all doing it?

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Travelling to work by scooter is faster than walking and less sweaty than cycling, so why aren’t we all doing it?
Paul Robeson: The story of how an American icon was driven to death to be told in film

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Terror unites Jerusalem after synagogue attack

Rising violence and increased police patrols have left residents of all faiths looking over their shoulders
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The Ebola crisis has Medecins sans Frontieres in the headlines, but their work goes far beyond West Africa
Isis extends its deadly reach with suicide bombing in Kurdish capital

Isis extends its deadly reach with suicide bombing in Kurdish capital

Residents in what was Iraq’s safest city fear an increase in jihadist attacks, reports Patrick Cockburn
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Sir John Major: Negative West End portrayals of politicians put people off voting

Sir John Major hits out at theatres

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Kicking Barbie's butt

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Stocking fillers: 10 best loo books

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Malky Mackay appointed Wigan manager: Three texts keep Scot’s rehabilitation on a knife-edge

Three texts keep Mackay’s rehabilitation on a knife-edge

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Louis van Gaal: the liberal, the enemy and... err, the poet

Louis van Gaal: the liberal, the enemy and... err, the poet

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